Let’s celebrate Winter Solstice at Glastonbury Tor by looking after this special place and each other

Glastonbury Multi-Agency Group (MAG) news release

People planning to celebrate the Winter Solstice at Glastonbury Tor are being encouraged to play their part in ensuring there’s minimal disruption and damage to the ancient site.

Irresponsible vehicle parking on Stonedown Lane close to the Tor’s north entrance has been a feature of previous Solstices, with emergency vehicles obstructed, access blocked for residents, and farmers unable to tend livestock.

Earlier this year a new road layout was introduced at the north entrance to the Tor to reinforce the clearway along Stonedown Lane and improve road safety. The work was carried out by Glastonbury Multi Agency Group (MAG), which represents the County, District and Town Councils, and Avon and Somerset Police. The MAG has been working alongside the National Trust to protect the site.

Feedback has been positive since the scheme was delivered and unauthorised parking has been greatly reduced – most notably during the Summer Solstice celebrations in June.

Visitors are reminded that there is limited parking for blue badge holders only at the north entrance to the Tor. Ample parking is provided in the town. A detailed map can be accessed and downloaded here: https://somersetnewsroom.files.wordpress.com/2022/06/solstice-parking-jpeg.pdf.

Camping and fires are also prohibited on Glastonbury Tor and the surrounding area. National Trust Rangers, who look after the Tor, will be patrolling. Police and parking enforcement will be patrolling too during the run-up to the Solstice on Wednesday 21 December. Penalty notices will be issued to those parked illegally, and where necessary, vehicles will be towed away.

Somerset County Council’s Lead Executive Member for Transport and Digital, Cllr Mike Rigby, said: “Since the works were completed in March, Stonedown Lane is quieter, cleaner and safer for pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders. It’s helped farmers get to their fields and ensured access isn’t blocked for residents or emergency vehicles.

“This is not about restricting access to the Tor at the north entrance. There is disabled parking at the site for blue badge holders and plenty of parking in town in close proximity to the Tor entrances, with well-marked routes for walkers.

“We would urge people to help look after this special place by respecting the environment and, if able, to either cycle or walk to the Tor from town.”

Cllr Rigby added: “We know this is a very important place for residents and visitors alike, and we really want to ensure everyone enjoys marking this year’s Winter Solstice.”

Joel Bunting, National Trust Area Ranger, said: “We encourage conscientious visitors to come to Glastonbury Tor and enjoy the Winter Solstice, we ask that visitors are respectful of the local community, mindful of the livestock and wildlife and help us look after this fantastic site by taking any litter home with you.

“I would also like to remind visitors that camping and fires are not allowed on the site.”

Have a question?

Please visit our dedicated webpage which hosts a FAQs sheet along with all the updates issued so far.

Glastonbury Unauthorised Encampments (somerset.gov.uk)

If you have any further questions regarding Glastonbury unauthorised encampments or the MAG, please contact Glastonburyencampments@somerset.gov.uk or phone 0300 123 2224.